Content Photos 101


the blog

by sarah elrod

Tune In On Apple Podcasts | Spotify

Do your social media photos feel boring and fall flat? Do you wish you could those pretty and professional looking content photos of your face without feeling like an awkward turtle? I got you boo boo.

Let’s be real for a second, we are not all professional models here. And being in front of the camera can make us feel so uncomfortable when we are not used to doing it every day.

But it’s something that is vital to being a business owner and creating a personal brand for yourself. Showing YOUR face is the golden ticked to connecting with your audience and followers. So no matter how you feel about it I guess it’s time to say saddle up Cowgirl and let’s do the dang thing.

Luckily though, you have come to the right place to learn about this. As a professional photographer I know all the ins and outs of what it feels like being in front and behind the camera. And today, I am here to give you all the tips and tricks to rocking your next content photo session.

I also want to note before we get started, content photos could also be known as branding photos (in case there was any confusion!)

Why Do We Take Them?

  • Our ideal clients need to see the real us. Not just what we do
  • People are more likely to buy from people they like, know and trust
  • When you put your face and personality out in the open on your social media and website, you are building relationships whether you even know it or not

Choose Outfits That Represent Your Brand

  • Pick a few outfits that represent different sides of you
  • I like to have a variety of casual and more formal outfits
  • Wear your brand colors, these surprisingly will play a huge part in your images and how well they match your aesthetic

Select Key Props

  • Along with the outfits you choose, you can also have props in some of your photos that show of your personality, your hobbies, or key factors in your brand/business
  • These also give a more lifestyle feel to your photos which can make them feel a lot more casual, and not so awkwardly posed
  • Use things like your laptop, your phone, your tablet, paint brushes, a camera, a horse, your dog, your kids, etc.
  • Think visual representation of you and your business

Get Inspired

  • This is where you get to daydream and have a bit of fun! 
  • Create a mood board or pinterest board for your shoot
  • Add everything from outfit ideas to locations, color palettes, textures, words, etc
  • Keep this handy during the shoot in case you lose inspiration on location
  • Make sure to send it to your photographer ahead of time so you can both be on the same page

Choosing A Photographer

  • Could be your mom, your friend, or your spouse. Doesn’t have to be a professional
  • If you do hire a professional, make sure it’s someone with an editing style that you want/like
  • Don’t ask them to change their style or the way they shoot if it’s dramatic
  • Make sure they make you feel comfortable before you book them. If you are not naturally confident in front of the camera, then you will want someone who will make you feel better about it. 
  • A good quality camera is nice to have but doesn’t really matter in the big picture of things

Actually Use Your Content Photos

Friend the last tip I want to throw your way is to actually use the content photos you take! They are there for you to spread across all your platforms! Let your people see your pretty face! Try posting images of yourself at least 2-3 times per week for the best results. This is going to keep your face at the front of your brand and infuse your personality into your pages! Contrary to popular belief, your followers want to see you! No matter what kind of business you have.

Remember, the overall goal of a content photo session is to put out images that will get people interacting with you! We want people to like, comment, and share our stuff! And of course learn more about us so we can establish relationships and eventually serve and/or sell to them.

I know you got this. You are going to be better than you think and I am so excited to see all that you create! Make sure to tag me on Instagram so I can come cheer you on!

Other Posts You Might Enjoy

Click here to read about How to turn 1 piece of content into 10

Click here to learn how to take better photos for Instagram

Click here to read about how to create a personal brand


I'm Sarah Elrod

The Podcast

Rural Lifestyle



I'm a Cowgirl turned serial entrepreneur.
I'm a horse trainer, western wedding photographer, business coach and ranch wife.
I help women in the western industry grow thriving businesses from rural America.
When I am not strategizing new marketing tactics, you will find me riding my horses, cuddling my cattle dog, or kissing my hot husband.
There is also a good chance I am buying way too many outfits from western boutiques.

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